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Med Clin North Am. 2010 May;94(3):531-40. doi: 10.1016/j.mcna.2010.02.002.

Sleepy driving.

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Department of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, Stanford, CA 94305, USA. <>


Sleepiness and drowsiness are neurophysiologic states that may cause attenuation of vigilance and slowing of reaction times, and thus increase the risks of driving. This article reviews selected peer-reviewed publications from the past and present body of knowledge regarding sleepiness and drowsiness while driving and related accidents, injuries, and possible death. Comparative studies of driving drunk and driving sleepy are reviewed because both exhibit similarly dangerous driving behaviors. It is hoped that some of the information from this article could provide new interest in the necessity of education for sleepy drivers.

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